Monday, December 21, 2009

Happy RamaHanuKwanzMas

Happy RamaHanuKwanzMas!

Uh oh! What about the atheists? What do we say to them during this "season?" I don't want to leave them out. :o)

H/t: Glenn Beck

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Secular Eschatology

"Because if we are willing to work fo rit, and fight for it, and believe in it, then I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal . . ."
-President Barack Obama, June 4, 2008

"Repent for the end is near!" Such words are synonymous with right-wing, fundamental Christians obsessed with Bible prophecy and the Book of Revelation. However, an obsession, or maybe fear, of the end is not limited to readers and fans of the Left Behind Series. Secularism is riddled with its own eschatology.

The world has just finished its long anticipated conference in Copenhagen where the world's nations sought to resolve the climate crisis. Essentially nothing was accomplished. What was "accomplished," was quit minuscule and will amount to nothing. By all accounts, it seems that the greatest achievement was the agreement to "continue the work" that was began in Copenhagen. In other words, the nations agreed to meet again.
Global warming (or global cooling depending on the generation)* is secular eschatology. It is complete with the same proponents of Christian eschatology. Christianity begins at Creation which became corrupt as the result of the Fall (Genesis 3) that affected human nature and the world. After centuries of legalism, liberty, and government, it became clear that man could not resolve his own problems. Therefore God showed up in the Incarnation. The Incarnation led to the cross and the resurrection where the sting of death was removed through the grace of God centered on the sacrificial death of Christ. And when Christ ascended, He promised to return.
The Return of Christ finishes the work of His first coming. The first coming was centered on the cross; the propitiatory work of God. Christ came to reconcile men with God and He did so through His death and resurrection. While on Earth, Christ taught and brought forth the Kingdom of God. At the second coming, Christ comes to set up His physical, earthly Kingdom where He will rule as King.

Christian eschatology consists of judgment and grace; sin and forgiveness, destruction and healing, fear and hope, destruction and recreation. Christ comes and brings the Utopia we all long for in our hearts. We want peace. We want prosperity. We want community. Eschatology makes those promises.
Secularism is no different. Gone are Christ, a bloody cross, an empty tomb, a rider on a white horse, Armageddon, and judgment. Like Christianity, the secular worldview consists of the same parts ending in eschatology. Creation; the problem; the failure of generations; salvation; eschatological/Utopian hope. And like Christian eschatology, secular eschatology comes with the promise of peace, prosperity, health, and community. The end is the same, the means is radically different.

Take the most prominent secular eschatology for example: global warming. Without the dire warnings of disaster and destruction, global warming would gain no ground. Al Gore, the UN Secretary, and many others have repeatedly warning that in 1 year, 2 years, 10 years, 20 years, or 30 years, much of the world would be under water and there would be no hope. Global warming presents the world with disaster. Judgment for our pollutant sins, if you will. The warnings for doing nothing lead to discriptions of apocalyptic scenereos where people die and the world is destroyed.

By uniting together, however, the world can resolve its own crisis. Richer nations (like the United States and China) must be willing to sacrifice their wealth and excess pollution to bring equality among the nations. Every political discussion of resolving global warming involves rich nations like ours helping 3rd world countries to become more prosperous. The idea is for us to sacrifice to help others. An international form of socialism between nations. By doing so, the world would be united, working together to resolve the problem of climate change, that brings about economic prosperity for us all.

Prosperity comes when we all share. Peace comes when we put all our petty differences aside and work together to resolve the greatest crisis of our time. Health will come when our children grow up in a clean environment free from the dangers of pollution and heat. Utopia will be in our grasp.

The connection between the proposed solution to apocalyptic climate change and socialism/ Marxism/ Communism is significant. Such economic theories have always been promoted with the hopes of peace and prosperity for all. The distribution of wealth, and the equal distribution of a nations (or worlds) resources promise to bring Utopia. The dictator or leader of such a society is a type of messiah who promises peace and prosperity to all who follow him.

The common denominator between all of these and similar secular eschatology, however, is frightening. They have all and will all fail. Miserably. The 20th Century graphically revealed the evil and utter failure of Communism. Instead of prosperity, it brought poverty. Instead of peace, it promoted tyranny and war. Other Utopia mindsets like the sexual revolution has led to broken homes, divorce, millions of abortions, and STDs.

The Utopian promise of global warming will likewise fail. The efforts of climate change alarmists should be applauded. Unity, environmental protection and care, and justice are all great things. But the Utopian hope of global warming will disappoint as all secular eschatologies do.

The reason for their failure is rooted in their understanding of man. Secularism puts all of its hope in mere man because God is an unwelcome nuisance. Man must resolve economic injustice, war and tyranny, and environmental catastrophes. And man will always fail.

Herein lies the great chasm between Christian and secular eschatology. Christianity puts its hope in God. Christians are called to pray, "come Lord quickly!," because we understand that God is our only hope. Things will only get worse, not better, apart from the spread of the gospel. Man is corrupt (rooted in the Fall) and destined to get worse. Secularism, on the other hand, has no other choice but to put their trust in man. Since God is off limits, man is our only hope. And this usually means that hope is rooted in government and power. But power corrupts. Beurocracy stalls. And goverment tax. Nothing ever gets resolved when man is given more power.

Let this be a warning to the world. All of your efforts will fail. Though the United Nations has been together for decades the amount of violence and war has only increased. Though modern medicine and technology has vastly improved over the centuries, with every cure comes hundreds of new illnesses. With every victory comes an avalanche of defeat. With every brief moment of hope comes an eternity of fear.

This is the beauty of the cross and the Christian worldview. Where man repeatedly fails, God eternally triumphs. Is that not the picture of Scripture. For centuries man relied on himself. Legalism (the Law), liberty (the Judges), and government (the monarchs of Israel) only made things worse. Legalism leads to tyranny. Liberty leads to violence and chaos. And governments only serve themselves. And then, a baby was born and a Savior was executed and raised. By the gospel, God comes to the forefront and His ways resolve our failures. God triumphs in the gospel, not through government or failed human attempts.

The gospel is our only hope. Let us be careful in buying into failed eschatologies that resolve nothing and only add to our long list of problems. Man has tried to bring Utopia and has failed every time. God, on the other hand, is forever triumphant. Therefore, let us pray: Come Lord Jesus. Come!

*Remember the hysteria regarding Global Cooling in the 1970s. Perhaps most infamous is the cover of Newsweek magazine in the 1970s warning Americans of the coming disaster of global cooling.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Abortion Reduction: The Danger of Compromising on Life

I have recently written a 18 page paper on Abortion Reduction and I encourage everyone to read it. I have written a number of previous articles on the subject, but this stands as the largest and most comprehesive treatment on the subject I have done. From my own research, I have yet to come across another treatment of the subject from a Pro-life, Evangelical (non-Emergent) perspective.

To download and read the paper, click here.

For more:
The Follow of Abortion Reduction: A Lesson in Common Sense
Social Conservatives Take Heed: 100 Days of Change
The Slavery of the Unborn: Why Abortion Reduction is Not Pro-Life
From Life to Choice to Economics: A New President and a Change in the Debate Over Life
A Day of "See I Told You So's"
Colson: The March of Death
"No We Won't": Obama and the Lie of Abortion Reduction
Abortion: Is Common Ground Possible?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Truth About Textbooks: An Eye-Opening Documentary

A few weeks ago, I watched a documentary on Fox News regarding textbooks in schools and colleges. Though I already knew about many of these issues, the way it is presented, the interviews, and the examples are rather shocking. This is an issue that Christians need to take more seriously and why I agree with Dr. R. Ablert Mohler Jr., should we begin thinking about an exit strategy from public schools? Of course, that assumes that the government won't take the other options away from us.

Regardless, the issues raised in this documentary are ones that need to be taken seriously. It is time for parents, teachers, administrators, and Christians to stop being so naive when it comes to their children's education and what kids are learning while away from their parents.

For more:
Mohler - Needed: An Exit Strategy

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Mising Story: Ida and the Search For Secular Validation

Remember Ida? Ida was the name given to a fossil discovered last May that many eager scientist identified as the missing link. The media was quick to pick up and spread the story. With the discovery of Ida came a book and a host of documentaries all arguing that the missing link had been discovered and Darwin had finally been proven right.

We've been here before. Ever so often a new discover leads to the same claim that the missing link had been discovered and the media is always there to report it. Such a claim and "scientific breakthrough" is always front page news. The cameras begin to role, keyboards begin to type, and the world watches with glee as their ancestors have finally been discovered.

But the story never ends there. The cycle begins with a discovery which is touted as proof of evolution, but is finally debunked as nothing more than a hoax. Ida is no different. Though those who discovered Ida gained their 15 minutes of fame, the truth has been uncovered; Ida is not who the media said she was.

What is most shocking about all of this is the lack of coverage this breakthrough receives every time. Just like the numerous times before the false claims that the missing link had been discovered is either not reported or considered unworthy for the front page. To most who got caught up in the Ida craze, she remains proof of the missing link because they remain ignorant of the truth. Ida is not who the media and many scientist said she was.

It is an appalling formula every time it is tried. Scientist continue to make wild claims about new discovers and the media always reports it before a full investigation is made. They blindly buy into the craze only to be disappointed. And it happens every time. And every time it happens those who gleefully welcomed the discovery are unavailable to report the truth.

But should we really be surprised by this? Every time the missing link is reportedly found the culture goes crazy, and when proven wrong, it gets shoved under the rug. Should we not expect this? Only when we buy into the hoax that the media and its many journalists (not to mention the scientists) are unbiased reporters of the truth, do we find ourselves surprised.

What is at play here is not science, but a worldview. Secularism and the modern science community is built, almost exclusively, on Darwinian evolution. The problem with such a worldview, however, is that evolution has yet to be proven. The incomplte fossil record leads to uncontrolable excitement because such a discovery would cross all of the t's and dot all of the i's of evolution. But to discover that fossils like Ida are not the missing link is a major cloud on one's worldview. Therefore, it gets pushed under the rug.

What the media and the culture craves from these discoveries is not breakthroughs in science, but validation of their worldview. Darwin's theory of evolution is the foundation by which modern secularism stands. Secular, relative morality assumes an evolutionary worldview. If evolution is true, then all morality is relative and determined by the culture. Morality evolves with the rest of the world. The modern movement of sexual ethics and liberation is rooted in a Darwinian theory of evolution. Marriage, family, and sexual identity have no purpose or ethical basis and thus are not morally necessary or even needed. Abortion and biotechnology also become issues of evolution. Why allow the handicap and the unwanted live in a survival of the fittest world? What about religion and belief in God? If evolution is true, then aren't such ideas foolishness?

Evolution shapes ones worldview and always has. Theories of origins have always shaped worldviews. Since Charles Darwin published his Origin of Species and later his Descent of Man, people have realized the implications of the theory. Thus when a new discovery is made promoted as proof of Darwin, secularist and cultural elites alike eagerly welcome the claims as a means to validate their worldview, but when proven false, it is ignored without fanfare and once again the world waits for yet another failed discovery.

Despite the repeated broken hearts of secularists, they continue to wait for their validation. The truth about Ida and all of the previous falsified finds should remind us of the desperation of fallen man. To accept the many holes and improababily of evolution would shatter the worldview of liberation from millions of people. So rather than acknowledge the obvious, many continue to wait for the next press conference in hopes of the validation they seek. Ida is not an example of good science, but hope-filled secularism on its ropes.

The battle over evolution is a battle of worldviews and thus the war will continue to wage. To tear down the walls of evolution would lead to a reshaping of the Western world and a likely return to more theistic roots. Likewise, to abandon a Biblical understanding of creation is to redefine the gospel, robbing the cross of its glory. What is at stake here is more than just scientific investigation, but the future of the Western world. Which will triumph in the end: the gospel of Creation or the gospel of evolution? As yet another discovery gives way to disappointment we are again reminded of the Apostle Paul's words regarding a society that denies the Creator in favor of man-centered myths: "professing to be wise they become fools" (Romans 1:22). And fools we have become; that is, until the next discovery.

For more:
World Magazine Blog - Ida not one of us

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Must Conservatives Believe in God? The Role of God In Shaping Our Politics

Is it possible to be both a conservative and an atheist? Does political, economic, moral, and foreign policy conservatism depend on one's view of God? At the popular conservative blog, American Thinker Shane Corsey argues that one can be conservative even without a fundamental belief in God. Corsey is case in point. He makes it clear that he does not believe in God and has serious objections to religion. He goes so far as to suggest that "God and religion do not belong in politics or . . . in the public arena." So is Corsey consistent with his worldview? Can one hold to conservative values like small government, low taxes, healthy families, strong national defense, and free market capitalism without any belief in God?

In a word: no. As Corsey lays out his argument, one is left wondering why Corsey is a conservative in the first place? On what foundation is conservativism based on without a fundamental belief in God? He begins by laying out his basic reason for considering himself a conservative:

One of the reasons I am a proud conservative is because it comes closest to the belief of what our Founding Fathers had in mind for this country, and the values of that system give an equal shake to anyone who wishes to come here. Religion in my opinion is not as forgiving, and can be as big of a divider in this country as race . . .

But one must wonder, then, why follow the beliefs of the Fonding Fathers? On what basis did the Founding Fathers found this nation? Where did their ideas of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness come from? Grant it, there were centuries of political theory and philosophy behind much of the Founder's demand for liberty and a Democratic Republic, but the question remains, where did such fundamental convictions of the Founding Fathers come from?

Though the Founding Fathers stopped short of pushing one particular religion, their belief in the existence and providence of God stood as the foundation for their political thought. Even a cursory read of the founding documents and from the Founding Fathers themselves affirm this conviction. No nation will establish a small government that promotes liberty instead of tyranny if it denies the authority and providence of God as the twenty-first century proved. By rejecting God, government takes the role of the highest authority in the life of the people. Even in atheistic nations the people must follow and submit to someone and when God is denied, government willingly takes His empty seat (and His unlimited authority). This is not a religious statement. The Founders opposed a federal religion but encouraged a national belief in God.

Corsey raises an interesting point regarding the divisiveness of religion. Most religions, including Christianity, regards itself as the one true religion and rightfully so. Why bother with a religion if it offers no assurance? If one can find God anywhere, why bother participating in a particular religion? But we must not forget the serious questions that religion seeks to answer like how can I be made right with God? how can I escape judgment? what is the meaning of life? why am I here? is there a God? what is right and wrong? Even atheism has answers to these questions.

Corsey continues his argument by focusing primarily on the issue of homosexuality. In our world today homosexuality is proof of the divisiveness of religion. He argues:

Religion also leaves many people by the wayside if you don't subscribe to their beliefs. Many gays and lesbians share all the same values as any other American yet they are shunned in most religious circles, because of their sexual preferences. I'm a happily married man and I do not subscribe to their way of doing things, but who am I, or who are you, to judge them? . . . . I also believe that they should be entitled to anything that a married couple should be entitled to, including adoption and getting the other spouse's Social Security benefits after one spouse has passed on.

One can see where the fundamental difference between an atheistic worldview and a theological worldview lie. The issue of morality is itself divisive and the homosexual debate only adds fuel to the fire. From an atheistic worldview, there is no reason to regard homosexuality wrong. Apart from a Divine Lawgiver why condemn two people in love, even if they are of the same sex, just like you and me?

But this raises an important issue regarding morality? Why does Corsey consider homosexuality to be moral yet other sexual preferences immoral? On what basis is he making his conclusions? Corsey goes on to raise the issue of the slippery slope: if homosexuality is permited what about polygamy, polyamory, incest, or even bestiality? Can the same arguments in favor of homosexuality be made for these other lifestyles? And if so, then why deny a polygamists his right to fulfill their own sexual desires.

Corsey allows this to be a possibility, but yet remains firm in conviction that there should be limits to what the State considers sexually lawful. He says that as long as "gays and lesbians follow the same value system as the rest of us, are over the age of 18, are not accosting minors, and they are doing it of their own free will and not being forced into it, then they are not harming anyone, and should not be ridiculed or excluded from society or religion for that matter." But why? On what grounds are his limits to sexuality based on? On what basis can one deny a minor and an adult, regardless of their genders, participate in sexual activity? On what basis can one deny bisexual polygamy between adults and minors? Why must it be consensual? What do you mean by a shared "value system?"

Apart from a fundamental belief in God who acts as a Divine Lawgiver that determines what is right and wrong, moral relativism is inevitable and as culture evolves, so will its morality. Can Corsey say today that if he were still alive 100 years from today he would still affirm this statement? By then not only will homosexuality likely be legal and normal, but so will other sexual lifestyles? On what basis does one draw limits and laws within a society when morality is relative on account of the absence of a holy deity? Such a philosophy is left with the option of simply making moral claims up. Divorce and homosexuality were morally wrong 100 years ago, but today it is not because society has said so and society has drawn such conclusions arbitrary because of its rejection of God.

Corsey goes on to provide more moral and political conclusions based on this weak foundation. He adds that neither sexual education (except maybe in high school, but before that, it should be limited to discussions of the differences in gender only, and only with parents attendance) or prayer should be promoted in schools. Prayer promotes one religion over another and sexual education is abused and encourages students to violate possible moral convictions:

My being against teaching gay sex in school is one of the same reasons school prayer should not be allowed. Sexual preference and religion have no business in our schools, these are subjects that are for home discussion, not school discussion. School is for learning, not for teaching about sex or religion. Religion belongs in one's home or place of worship, not in our schools. In instituting prayer in our schools, we would be forcing the beliefs of one religion onto the ones of another religion, or on those who do not wish it, causing strife. Just like teaching sexual orientation would force a set of unwanted beliefs on others.

Again, on what basis does Corsey make such conclusions? If homosexuality is a shared value among Americans, why not teach it at public schools? If prayer is a shared value among Americans, why not allow it in public schools? Corsey, again, is left determining policy out of a straw hat of his own design. Theism, on the other hand, is not so lucky.

But perhaps the most amazing argument comes in the concluding paragraph. The atheist conservative argues:

In values we can all find common ground, but not so much with religious views - too many differences. Right and wrong have no religion, they are of almost every religion and of none. Don't get me wrong, I think religion does have its place in our society, but that place is a place of our own choosing not religion's choosing. Religion does not choose us, we choose whatever religion we choose to be. But American values and principles reside in the vast majority of all Americans, and can be used to bring all of us closer together regardless of religion, race, or sexual orientation.

"Right and wrong have no religion?" His argument is that one cannot say that the morality of one religion is superior to another religion (including non-religion) because all religions teach basically the same thing. This is simply not true. Already Corsey has shown his moral view regarding sexuality that runs contrary to many other religious beliefs. If God is not needed in conservatism then does that mean that Corsey's moral opinions rooted in his atheistic worldview become the standard that one must adopt in order to be included in the conservative movement? Is Corsey not encouraging his readers to follow him and not their religious beliefs that run contrary to his moral beliefs? Is that not divisive?
Such naivete is folly. America is built on division. Democracy cannot thrive without divisions. The purpose of the Bill of Rights is to ensure that democracy will flourish. And that Bill of Rights is built on the assumption that there is a God. The minute persons are told what not to say or the press is told what not to report is the minute democracy dies. Unity is wonderful, but apart from uniformity (which quenches freedom and liberty) it is impossible. There is no such thing as a uniformed democratic, free society.

So must one believe in God in order to be conservative? Regarding some political issues perhaps not. But regarding the issues raised by Corsey, including small government and morality, unless one affirm a belief in the Divine it is hard to imagine how one could consistently be conservative. The atheist conservative sounds more like a atheistic moderate (or even liberal) regarding moral issues than his theistic counterparts and fails to explain why he believes in the small government principles of the Founding Fathers if God does not exist.

As Christians, we must not forget the effect that our theology plays in our politics and our moral outlook. If we are bound by Scripture, then relativism is an unwelcomed guest. So long as America affirms its traditional and founding belief in a providential God who stands as the ultimate judge over our actions, policies, and vote then we will uphold the legacy of our Founding Fathers. But the minute we let go of such a foundation, then all that the Founders stood for will likely crumble before our very eyes.

For More:
Shane Corsey (American Thinker) - God, Conservatism and Values
"Common Sense" - Glenn Beck
"Common Sense" - Thomas Paine

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Transcedence of Greed: What Economics Can Teach Us About the Gospel

Current political events and debates, particularly regarding the economy, has encouraged more divisive barking between liberals and conservatives in America. I was recently listening to a radio show where the host (an economic conservative) was arguing with a caller (an economic liberal) over the issue of taxes, the rich, and the economy. Both were making the same argument that has been repeated over and over again.

The argument runs like this. Liberals who lean towards a more democratic socialistic model believe that rich people are greedy and evil and should be punished. For the sake of the whole nation, their excess should be taken and given to those less fortunate. One common argument given is that capitalists are greedy and government should regulate the market in order to "look out for the little guy." On the other end of the spectrum, conservatives lean towards a more free-market model and believe that everyone is in charge of their own destiny. They charge that liberals and socialists hate and stand in the way of freedom. Government robs ingenuity and liberty. Government is the problem. The smaller the government, the better the economy.

We've all heard these arguments before and there is no need to go into more details. The goal here is not to defend or attack either one. As I was listening to the radio host and the caller go through their talking points, something eye opening hit me: they are both right, but not in the way one might think.

The primary charge raised by the liberal was that conservatives and capitalists are greedy. They are exactly right. Adam Smith, the intellectual founder of capitalism, would agree to this. Smith understood that men were by nature greedy and thus developed his economic theory of capitalism on that doctrine. Both the customer and the businessman are greedy. The entrepreneur wants the customers money. The customer wants the best products for the least amount of money. They both contribute to the other's selfishness thus satisfying the greed of the other.

This is really the beauty of the capitalist system. Anyone who criticises capitalism based on its lust for more money and power miss the point. Of course entrepreneurs want more money, that is why they are in business. They do their advertisement and decorate their businesses for the sole purpose of making more money. So to charge capitalism for being a system of greed is to only state the obvious. It was built and has thrived on it.

But socialist leaning liberals need to be careful; their economic theory is also guilty of greed. Socialism says, "its not fair that I don't have what they have, therefore, what they have should be taken." That's greed. As President Obama told Joe the Plumber on the campaign trail, he wanted to take his wealth and give it to others. That's greed. Capitalism is built on selfishness and socialism is built on theft. Socialism believes that the government should have authority over how ones salary, production, and growth. It will decide if someone makes too much, has too much, or is paying enough in taxes. Whenever the government introduces a new program or runs a program into bankruptcy, instead of making tough decisions, it simply takes (or steals) from the rich and uses class envy as a means of justifying themselves. Many liberals find themselves saying things like, "the rich have more than they need; its not fair that they have so much while everyone else has so little; etc."

Greed permeates both economic theories. Should we really be surprised by this? Whether one is a socialist, a communists, a Marxists, a capitalist, a conservative, a libertarian, or even an anarchists, all are stained with greed. This is precisely what the Christian worldview teaches; all of us are selfish and greedy; all of us want more for less work; all of us want what others have and will stop at no lengths of getting it.

We are all greedy. The problem with these economic systems is not their theories (though both could be rightly criticized), but with human nature. Its not our economy that is sick, we are sick. So long as government and pundits run around trying to fix the exterior (like the economy or health care) nothing will be resolved. What we need is revival, not more or less taxes (taxes themselves are based on greed. I want lower taxes so that I can keep more of my own money, yet at the same time, I think the guy next to me should be taxed more so that I can enjoy his wealth).

Though government plays a vital role in society, more or less government is not the solution nor the debate that should occupy our time. The gospel is the solution. Greed can only be conquered by the cross, not through economic or tax policy. So long as everyone trusts in the decisions and programs (or the lack there-of) of government, the more divided and desperate we will be. But once we become transformed by the gospel, then we can see real change.

Though we might shout and yell at one another over critical issues like the economy, let us not forget the most important issue: the external greed of man will not remedied apart from the internal work of the Spirit. That is one thing both liberals and conservatives have taught us. We are all greedy and we all need the sort of change that cannot be brought about by government, but only by God.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Lion of the Senate and the Lamb of God: The Pope, the Politcian, and the Plea For Grace

The death of Senator Edward M. Kennedy marks the end of an era. His death marked the first time in decades that a Kennedy did not occupy the Massachusetts Senate seat. Senator Kennedy was the last of the big three Kennedy brothers. Following the tragic death of former President John F. Kennedy and his brother Robert greatly affected the late Senator. The mantle of the Kennedy name fell upon his shoulders.

Of all of the Kennedy's, Senator Kennedy will likely go down as the one who contributed the most to American history. Serving the public for half a century, Kennedy became known as the "Lion of the Senate" and influenced policy, presidents, and the direction of the country.

Prior to his death, Senator Kennedy, a life-long Catholic, sent a letter to Pope Benedict XVI via President Barack Obama who delivered the letter to the Pope. In the letter Kennedy sought assurance that upon his death the Lion of the Senate would be present with the Lamb of God. Kennedy wrote:

I have been blessed to be part of a wonderful family. And both of my parents, particularly my mother, kept our Catholic faith at the center of our lives. That gift of faith has sustained and nurtured and provided solace to me in the darkest hours. I know that I have been an imperfect human being, but with the help of my faith, I have tried to right my path.

I want you to know, Your Holiness, that in my nearly 50 years of elective office, I have done my best to champion the rights of the poor and open doors of economic opportunity. I have worked to welcome the immigrant, to fight discrimination and expand access to health care and education. I have opposed the death penalty and fought to end war. Those are the issues that have motivated me and have been the focus of my work as a United States senator.

The late Senator went on to add that he has also fought for health care for everyone in America. He continues to trust that his colleagues in the Senate would continue to fight for "the political cause" of his life and everyone would indeed have equal access to health care.

He concluded:

I have always tried to be a faithful Catholic, Your Holiness, and though I have fallen short through human failings, I have never failed to believe and respect the fundamental teachings of my faith. I continue to pray for God's blessings on you and on our church and would be most thankful for your prayers for me.

Kennedy's plea is understandable. I have been at the bedside of many who were dying and wanted the assurance that God would accept their soul into heaven. Though Kennedy was powerful, he could not overcome the assurance of death and his accountability in the next life. In Kennedy's letter one theme runs through: has he done enough to gain the favor of God Almighty?

In answer to that question Kennedy points to a number of accomplishments and good works in his life (most of them political). He turned to his Catholic faith in moments of great difficulty and tragedy. Throughout his life, he tried to right his path and override his personal failings with good works. He has defended the poor and needy. He open doors to economic justice. He welcomed immigrants without discrimination and fought for the nation to welcome them as equals. He has fought against the death penalty and against unjust wars. Finally, Kennedy has fought vehemently to grant health care for everyone regardless of their socioeconomic status, race, creed, religion, or nationality.

Kennedy certainly fought for a lot of causes in his public career. There are no lies and no stretching the truth in this list of "accomplishments." But what affect did any of it have on his salvation? Will these things be enough to assure his entrance into the Kingdom of God? The truth is, Kennedy was looking for assurance in the wrong place. The Pope's brief reply hints at this:

His Holiness prays that in the days ahead you may be sustained in faith and hope, and granted the precious grace of joyful surrender to the will of God, our merciful father. He invokes upon you the consolation and peace promised by the risen savior to all who share in his sufferings and trust in his promise of eternal life.

The Pope's language is interesting. He never gives Kennedy the assurance he craves, but rather pleads for him to "be sustained in faith and hope, and granted the precious grace of joyful surrender to the will of God, our merciful father." The Pope calls on the Senator to surrender himself to the merciful will of God in faith and with hope trusting in His precious grace. What Kennedy wants most the Pope does not grant.

Kennedy was trusted his politics, while the Pope pointed to God's grace. Kennedy foolishly bought into the notion that somehow our good can outweigh our bad even though all that we do is tainted with sin. Even our good works are polluted. Do we really expect God to accept polluted righteousness?

The folly of Kennedy is a lesson that we all need to learn. Not only are we to embrace the message of the cross, which says we are all sinners separated by God and yet can be reunited with Him by full submission and repentance, but we also ought to avoid the folly of equating our politics with the gospel. At the end of the day, Kennedy had no other source of assurance than his politics. In his letter to the Pope he says nothing about the cross, about Christ, or the Resurrection, nor does he mention repentance or reflect a more Biblical understanding of sin. Kennedy just had his politics.

Sadly, many in America are falling for the same folly. When reflecting on what assurance we have of heaven after death we give a long list of good works; we never got divorced, our children turned out good, and I always voted for the right candidate. Sadly, we put more trust in our many good works than in Christ's one good work. Politicians and citizens alike believe that if only they support the right causes, donate to the right charities, or practice the right morality God will take notice and overlook their fallen nature.

Kennedy's plea for salvation should humble us all. If even the Pope would not give him the assurance he desperately craved, how much more us? Very few who will read these words will have the political resume of the late Senator and yet we all foolishly believe that somehow we are still on God's good side. If this lion feared meeting the Lamb, how much more ought we fear? Kennedy was no perfect politician and seemed to always be involved in some state of controversy, but at the end of his life, he was being humbled before the Lord he was about to meet.

But if we learn anything, let us learn that politics is no source of hope. Politics and government has its role and Christians are called to submit to their political leaders, but even the greatest and most powerful politicians are no match and can pass no legislation that would grant them what we all crave: assurance of salvation when this life gives way to the next. Kennedy fought as hard as anyone else in pleasing his God, but apart from repentance and submission to the Savior who died in our place, no politician, politics, or policy can redeem anyone and grant the hope of ever hearing, "Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter the joy of your Master."

Christians must not fall for the folly that politics can replace theology. Kennedy's letter should remind us that at the end of the day, God is greater than any politician. Therefore, let us be about the business of the gospel, and not so commonly distracted with the business of government.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Anti-Choice Sinner & the Abortionist Saint: One a Martyr, the Other a Nuisance

There is a double standard in our culture and it is no more apparent than in the tragic deaths of two men who had differing views on abortion. The first murdered victim was George Tiller, a late-term abortionist doctor who was killed while at a church in Kansas. Tiller's death received wide press coverage throughout the nation. At the time, virtually every news orgainzation carried the story. Both pro-life and pro-choice proponents universally condemned the killing as beneath their cause. Pro-lifers understood that any form of murder is inconsistent with a pro-life worldview

The media spin was rather unfortunate. It seemed that the media used the opportunity to demean pro-life proponents. Tiller's murderer was painted as the typical pro-lifer who was radical and bent toward violence. Religious zealots and violent extremists even though pro-life advocates universally condemned the murder.

On the other hand, the murder of pro-life advocate and protestor Jim Pouillon has received less press. The motive for the murder was based on Pouillon views and persistent protesting against abortion. What is most tragic about this case is that unlike the Tiller murder, Pouillon has received very little media converage outside of pro-life websites. The silence is defeaning.

I have been stratching my head at this. How is this not a story worth reporting equally as much as the Tiller tragedy? Here is an opportunity for Americans to be united under the right to free speech and protest apart from violence. We can differ and debate without the need of violence. Instead, we get loud laments for Tiller and silence for Pouillon. The murder of the late-term abortionist doctor was universally condemned by all and yet the murder of the abortionists protestor goes virtually unreported.

But upon further thought, should we really be surprised. A culture obsessed with death and the shedding of the blood of our little ones see in Tiller a saint who died for the cause of liberation and sexual freedom. Feminists unite. Pouillon, on the other hand, seems to be, quit frankly, unworthy of our culture's attention. He is, in fact, the enemy. With the demonization of pro-lifers in our culture, no wonder no one noticed the apalling murder of "one of them."

While Tiller was canonized by the press and the broader culture, Pouillon has been characterized as a right-wing radical. Those who have reported on his death point out where and how he would protest against the murder of the unborn such as outside of schools. A few headlines, for example, include: "Homicide victim James Pouillon had extensive background of civil violations, many related to anti-abortion protests," and "Former co-worker describes dead anti-abortion activist, killed Friday morning in front of Owosso High School, as radical and committed."

Should we really be surprised by all of this? With a culture whose hands are stained with blood, what is one more innocent life; especially one who vehemetly opposed and fought against the first and foremost sacrament of Church of Western Secularism. Why care about the murder of an innocent man whenever we, defend, and promote celebrate the decapitation of an entire generation without a sigh. Just another day in America.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Graham: The Unwavering Love of God

With the 8th anniversary of 9/11, I wanted to post this message by Dr. Billy Graham which he gave on the 1 month anniversary of that day. What I love about this message is how Graham began his message with the events of 9/11 and goes directly to the cross.

For More:
2007 - September 11th Remembered
Billy Graham and Eschatology
"Billy Graham: His Life And Influence"
"Why?: Trusting God When You Don't Understand"
"The Preacher and the Presidents"
Hall: Remembering Los Angeles
Billy Graham, Time Magazine, and the Devil?
Billy Graham and Inclusivism

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

William Wilberforce and the End of Slavery: A Legacy of the Gospel

Yesterday was the 250th birthday of William Wilberforce who almost single-handily ended slavery in England. What makes Wilberforce's story so powerful is the motivation behind his tackling of the behemoth of ending slavery. Wilberforce was a lone voice for decades, and yet through perseverance, he brought the institution down. The motivation behind Wilberforce to abolish slavery in his country was the gospel. Wilberforce understood that the gospel, and the Christian faith, was not a passive faith.

The gospel means freedom. The gospel means equality. The gospel means grace. The gospel means mercy. Wilberforce understood that Christ died for all, both free and slave and that all are made in the image of God and therefore worthy of justice. It was the gospel message of Christ that drove him to defend the defenseless, love the loveless, and fight for the helpless.

What Wilberforce leaves behind is not just justice for those who were denied it, or the imperative and possibility of being a Christian and yet a politician, but that the power of the gospel knows no ends. Wilberforce had a mountain to climb and through power of the cross, God used him to bring down a horrendous institutions in Western history.

Let Wilberforce be a reminder to Christians today that God moves mountains through the power of the cross. But the gospel is not just a social message, it is a spiritual message with social implications. Christ died in my place. Now, let us go living as He died.

I strongly encourage you to watch this video which surveys his life and legacy. Here is the trailer for the movie "Amazing Grace" which is based on his life

For more:
Also, watch the movie "Amazing Grace"

Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Next Step: Is Polyamory the Next Sexual Movement?

What comes next? That's the question that will be inevitably answered after homosexuality is legalized and normalized. Opponents of same sex marriage rightly raise this issue. Homosexuality is not the last straw. As Christians, we understand that fallen man is not content with their sin. Sin, therefore, will only increase and fallen man will seek more ways to indulge the flesh.

So, what is next? Polygamy? Lowering the age of consent? Bestiality?


Polyamory is similar to polygamy, but does not involve marriage and consists of multiple couples who interchange with other couples living with them in their sexual experience. It is non-monogomous sexuality. Marriage is ignored and sexual promiscuity with multiple, consensual partners is practiced. Polyamory could be the next stage in our cultures obsession with unrestrained sex.

I hate to say it but, "I told you so." For those who feel that homosexuality is the last straw be prepared to be proven wrong. I predict that the polyamory movement will only grow and demand to be normalized, organized, and legalized. Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. writes:

Legal theorists and opponents of same-sex marriage routinely (and rightly) make the argument that the legalization of homosexual marriage will, inevitably, lead to the legalization of polygamy. Once marriage is redefined to allow for same-sex unions, any determination to maintain legal prohibitions against polygamy will be seen as merely arbitrary. At the same time, once strictures against adultery were eliminated in the culture and in the law, something essentially like polygamy was inevitable.

And we will give in. How so? Because the same arguments made by homosexuals will be made to defend and promote polyamory. How can we say as a society that they do not have the right to practice their sexual lifestyles in private? Is polyamory not a civil right? Who is to say that is wrong? What is the purpose of marriage? What about civil unions? You cannot legislate morality right? Who are you to tell polyamorists that they are sinners? If they love one another, why does it matter?

You see the point. We should not be surprised by this. The moral decay of the culture has already begun. Dr. Mohler argues:

Perhaps the best way to understand this new movement is to understand it as a natural consequence of subverting marriage. We have largely normalized adultery, serialized marriage, separated marriage from reproduction and childbearing, and accepted divorce as a mechanism for liberation. Once this happens, boundary after boundary falls as sexual regulation virtually disappears among those defined as "consenting adults."

Consenting adults becomes the rationale for virtually any sexual practice. It is the argument made by homosexual proponents today. If two people love each other, who are we to intervene? Likewise, if polymory is consensual, how can we say that it is wrong? How dare we seek to stop it? But the madness will not end there. What about polygamy? lowering the age of consent? even bestiality?

We see then that issues like marriage, family, childbearing, and sexuality become rather relative terms in a society that has replaced absolute, final, and binding truth to privatisation and tolerance. The Church needs to be prepared to fight against more than just homosexuals and divorce. Those are only the tip of the iceberg. As Christians, we must be armed with the gospel that transforms the soul and sanctifies the sinner. We are all sinners in need to be remade. As the culture continues to become more deviant, we must realize that the answer is not just in elections, politics, and law, but in the preaching of Christ and Him crucified.

For more:
Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. - Polyamory -- The Perfectly Plural Postmodern Condition
Newsweek - Only You. And You. And You.: Polyamory—relationships with multiple, mutually consenting partners—has a coming-out party.
Newsweek - ‘Traditionalists Better Get Used to’ Polyamory ,
The Polyamory Society Official Site
Where Does The Madness End? The Dire Destination Of The Homosexual Agenda - Part 1
Colson: Same-Sex 'Marriage' Today...Polygamy Tomorrow
Where Did I Really Come From?: Human Sexuality For Two-Year-Olds
Update: "Let's Talk About Sex Baby" - Barak Obama and Sex Education
Polygamy on the Rise: See, I Told You So
Pro-Marriage and Un-American: The Logic of the Left
Olbermann, Proposition 8, and the Left
1st Graders At a Lesbian Wedding: The Secular Indoctrination of Our Children
Obsess Much?: Understanding Our Cultures Obsession With Sex
Mohler: From the Bible to "Intimacy Kits" -- Goodbye to the Gideons?
An Oversexed Culture Coming to a Middle School Near You
A Seven Year Itch? Recovering Marriage in a Culture That Took It Out of It's Vocabulary - Part 1
D'Souza: The Equal Protection Hoax
A Day of "See, I Told You So's"

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Mohler: Is Cap and Trade for Babies Next?

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of the Southern Baptist Convention, has written a frightening article. Recently some researchers have proposed that the real solution to saving the environment is not to limit our carbon emissions by driving less or taxing our energy consumptions, but by limiting the number of children we produce.

At the end of the day, if global warming is true and humans are the main cause for it, the only solution is for humans to become extinct. The authors, apparently, are not saying that we should go extinct, only we should calculate the environmental risk of children. They suggests that a woman who is environmentally conscience would increase her carbon emissions by more than 40 times just by having two children.

Do you see what is happening. In a culture that has rejected God have redefined what it means to be human. Children are no longer gifts, but economic and, now, ecological burdens. Economically speaking, children conceived in low income families should be abortion. Ecologically speaking, children are a threat to the environment. Children are no longer seen as gifts to the world but crimes against nature.

As Christians, we should not be surprised by this. Whenever man replaces God for something else, in this case Mother Nature, this sort of lunacy is expected. A secular culture has no time for God and thus finds other idols to serve. Though the propositions proposed by these researchers are outlandish and likely have no chance of ever been enacted (at least one would like to think so), the worldview behind the proposal is significant and what it says about our culture is equally significant.

Our loss of God has resulted in our loss of ourselves. We are mere animals. Here one minute and gone another. The destruction of God in our society radically affects what we take seriously and what we take for granted. As a Christian and a father I am proud of the fact that my son is contributing to my carbon emissions. Not because I wish to harm the planet, but because I find giving glory to God more important.

Dr. Mohler's conclusion is most fitting:

Anti-natalist philosophies have been around even longer than arguments over ecology and sustainability. Given our biblical responsibility for environmental stewardship, Christians should indeed be thoughtfully engaged with the entire nexus of questions related to carbon emissions, climate change, and respect for the Earth. Nevertheless, when we begin to measure babies in terms of a "carbon legacy" and a projected threat to the environment, we abandon the biblical worldview. Human beings cannot be reduced to a "carbon legacy" and the gift of children must never be seen as an assault upon the earth.

For More:

Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. - Is Cap and Trade for Babies Next?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

On the Outside Looking In: The Reality of the Duty to Die in the West

The slippery slope of the culture of death continues to slide. Although America has not, as a nation, adopted euthanasia, many in the West have and this creates a number of problems. Recently a British couple committed suicide together by drinking a lethal poison. The wife was sick with terminal cancer, the husband was not. So out of love for each other, the two died "peacefully" with one another. And the children are proud of their parents for their decision and supported them the whole way.

This creates a number of problems. First, there is the legal problem: it is still illegal to practice euthanasia in England. This couple had to travel to another country in order to gain accessed to their right to die together. The question is what does England do about this? Should they prosecute the children for encouraging and aiding their parents in this? The children have already said publicly, "Even if they arrest us and send us to prison, it would have made no difference because it is what our parents wanted."

Another issue is what this says about Western culture. Already Oregon and Washington state have legalized, even through the ballot box, euthanasia. It is tempting to see this case as typically, but it is not. It is sad to see anyone die for any reason, but should we encourage it? The right to die quickly becomes the duty to die. In a culture of death, it is rare to find such stories of romance and commitment like this regarding suicide and euthanasia.

As the West continues down the slippery slope of death, it will become more and more difficult to stand against the tide. Like most moral issues, man will usually compromise and give in to the pressures. Eventually what at first seemed repugnant, in this case euthanasia, infanticide, etc., will become the normal. As time goes on our conscience becomes more severed and we accept more and more especially whenever these issues are promoted with stories of romance and love like this.

But if the truth be told, this story is rare. As we stand on the outside looking in, we must realize where this roads takes us. Government, doctors, and insurance companies will determine who should live and who should get treated, not families, not loved ones, and not the patients themselves. And the more control the government has over health care, the lesson freedom the individual has over treatment, prevention, or surgery. It becomes less about saving or curing lives, and more about removing life unworthy of living and promoting the healthy and the strong.

We've been down this road before and the blood of many in the 20th century are constant reminders of what such a culture looks like. Let us take stock and really think these things through while on the outside looking in before we are inside wishing we were out.

For more:
World Magazine: Suicide in Switzerland
Painting is of the death of Socrates

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Great Magician: Obama Thanks the LGBT While the World Mourned Michael Jackson

The key to a good magician is distraction. Get the audience to focus on one hand while setting up the trick with the other. Get the audience to look elsewhere while the magician works his "magic" where the audience isn't looking. The same happens in the world of politics. It is easy to get things done whenever the public is distracted.

The past few weeks, the public has been distracted. Several celebrities have died and Michael Jackson's death has been particularly interesting. Jackson's death has been given wall to wall coverage from the mainstream media. And so, while Americans were watching their favorite Jackson videos and unending documentaries on his life, legacy, and music, our President continued working. Though the news was stalled, lingering on Jackson, everyday life in the world and the Whitehouse continued.

While all the world was mourning the lost of pop singer Michael Jackson, our President was hosting a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender reception thanking them and vowing to fight for the movement. Virtually no one has reported on it and if it weren't for the Internet and talk radio, virtually no one in America would have been aware of this speech.

The President declared the month of June to be the national month for LGBT pride. The climax, it would seem, of this declaration came on June 25, 2009 when the President gave this speech in a room consisting of the leaders of the homosexual movement. The significance of this date was that it marked the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall protests which was led by homosexuals in their fight for "freedom," many of whom were present at the giving of this speech.

The President gives those in the room, who represent the LGBT movement in America, credit for his election as president. He begins, "It's good to see so many friends and familiar faces, and I deeply appreciate the support I've received from so many of you. Michelle appreciates it and I want you to know that you have our support, as well. And you have my thanks for the work you do every day in pursuit of equality on behalf of the millions of people in this country who work hard and care about their communities - and who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender."

The President then shares sympathy for the homosexual community due to prejudice from those "who still hold fast to worn arguments and old attitudes; who fail to see your families like their families; and who would you the rights that most Americans take for granted. And I know this is painful and I now it can be heartbreaking . . . For we know that progress depends not only on changing laws but also changing hearts. And that real, transformative change never beings in Washington."

The Presidents attack against "old attitudes" and "worn arguments" is itself an old attitude and worn argument. Homosexuals and proponents of the gay rights movement consider persons like myself too old fashion and unwilling to change. Rather, persons like myself are unwilling to compromise our faith, our values, our families, our convictions, and our rights. Without going into detail, I have already raised the argument that the sexual liberation movement does not end with homosexuality. First will come homosexuality, then issues such as polygamy and other sexual issues will be fought for with the same arguments.

Furthermore, I am surprised to hear the President say that change doesn't happen in DC and yet he ran on a campaign of "change" and vowed (even in this address) to force change by enacting legislation. Grant it, his argument is that change doesn't begin in DC, but rather legislation reflects national opinion. If that be the case, then why have the majority of states to vote on the issue define marriage as between one man and one woman? Furthermore, why have many states who marry homosexuals done so through the activism of a single judge? Obama may not think that movements begin in DC, but certainly they are oftentimes forced on the unwilling through the gavel of a judge or the stroke of a pen from a politician.

Next, the President seems to connect the gay rights movement with Civil rights. I have to say that I strongly disapprove of this connection. What blacks rightly fought for and achieved during the age of Civil Rights was equality over something that they, nor their opponents could control: that is, their race. Homosexuality is not biological, but chosen. One can blame it on their upbringing or experiences, but in the end, it is a choice. The President said:

Indeed, that's the story of the movement for fairness and equality -- not just for those who are gay, but for all those in our history who've been denied the rights and responsibilities of citizenship; who've been told that the full blessings and opportunities of this country were closed to them.

It's the story of progress sought by those who started off with little influence or power; by men and women who brought about change through quiet, personal acts of compassion and courage and sometimes defiance wherever and whenever they could.

That's the story of a civil rights pioneer who's here today, Frank Kameny, who was fired -- (applause.) Frank was fired from his job as an astronomer for the federal government simply because he was gay. And in 1965, he led a protest outside the White House, which was at the time both an act of conscience but also an act of extraordinary courage. And so we are proud of you, Frank, and we are grateful to you for your leadership. (Applause.)

It's the story of the Stonewall protests, which took place 40 years ago this week, when a group of citizens -- with few options, and fewer supporters -- decided they'd had enough and refused to accept a policy of wanton discrimination. And two men who were at those protests are here today. Imagine the journey that they've travelled.

It's the story of an epidemic that decimated a community -- and the gay men and women who came to support one another and save one another; and who continue to fight this scourge; and who demonstrated before the world that different kinds of families can show the same compassion and support in a time of need -- that we all share the capacity to love. So this story, this struggle, continues today -- for even as we face extraordinary challenges as a nation, we cannot -- and will not -- put aside issues of basic equality. (Applause.) We seek an America in which no one feels the pain of discrimination based on who you are or who you love.\

And I know that many in this room don't believe that progress has come fast enough, and I understand that. It's not for me to tell you to be patient, any more than it was for others to counsel patience to African Americans who were petitioning for equal rights a half century ago.

So then, the fight for gay rights is a fight for civil rights. One must wonder what else could be considered a civil right, especially regarding sexual identity and preference. We can legislate morality against bestiality and pedophilia, but somehow homosexuality is different. Does the pedophile not love the little child too? What if it is consensual? Do they not love each other as the homosexual or heterosexual partners?. If sexual preference is a civil right issue, I ask the question, where does the madness end?

The President then makes some serious promises to his listeners and supporters from the gay community:

But I say this: We have made progress and we will make more. And I want you to know that I expect and hope to be judged not by words, not by promises I've made, but by the promises that my administration keeps. And by the time you receive -- (applause.) We've been in office six months now. I suspect that by the time this administration is over, I think you guys will have pretty good feelings about the Obama administration. (Applause.)

So progress has been made and more progress will be made through DC afterall. The President then details what progress he has already made:

Now, while there is much more work to do, we can point to important changes we've already put in place since coming into office. I've signed a memorandum requiring all agencies to extend as many federal benefits as possible to LGBT families as current law allows. And these are benefits that will make a real difference for federal employees and Foreign Service Officers, who are so often treated as if their families don't exist. And I'd like to note that one of the key voices in helping us develop this policy is John Berry, our director of the Office of Personnel Management, who is here today. And I want to thank John Berry. (Applause.)

I've called on Congress to repeal the so-called Defense of Marriage Act to help end discrimination -- (applause) -- to help end discrimination against same-sex couples in this country. Now, I want to add we have a duty to uphold existing law, but I believe we must do so in a way that does not exacerbate old divides. And fulfilling this duty in upholding the law in no way lessens my commitment to reversing this law. I've made that clear.

I'm also urging Congress to pass the Domestic Partners Benefits and Obligations Act, which will guarantee the full range of benefits, including health care, to LGBT couples and their children. (Applause.) My administration is also working hard to pass an employee non-discrimination bill and hate crimes bill, and we're making progress on both fronts. (Applause.) Judy and Dennis Shepard, as well as their son Logan, are here today. I met with Judy in the Oval Office in May -- (applause) -- and I assured her and I assured all of you that we are going to pass an inclusive hate crimes bill into law, a bill named for their son Matthew. (Applause.)

In addition, my administration is committed to rescinding the discriminatory ban on entry to the United States based on HIV status. (Applause.) The Office of Management and Budget just concluded a review of a proposal to repeal this entry ban, which is a first and very big step towards ending this policy. And we all know that HIV/AIDS continues to be a public health threat in many communities, including right here in the District of Columbia. And that's why this past Saturday, on National HIV Testing Day, I was proud once again to encourage all Americans to know their status and get tested the way Michelle and I know our status and got tested. (Applause.)

The President goes on to discuss issues such as the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in the military. By now I'm sure you know where he stands on that issue.

Before talking about the events at Stonewall, the President said:

Now, even as we take these steps, we must recognize that real progress depends not only on the laws we change but, as I said before, on the hearts we open. For if we're honest with ourselves, we'll acknowledge that there are good and decent people in this country who don't yet fully embrace their gay brothers and sisters -- not yet.

"Not yet." And the President intends on doing all that he can to open the hearts of those who resist the gay agenda. Although America will likely, eventually, fully accept homosexuality as a normal lifestyle, it will not happen without a fight. Though the President can make many promises, keeping them will be much more difficult. If the President wants to be re-elected, he will have to play his cards right. The gay community is already beginning to feel abandoned by the Obama administration and so he must do something before loosing their support. At the same time, to force the homosexual agenda down America's throat will certainly destroy any chance he may have to get re-elected in 2012.

In the end, what is most appalling about this speech is how little anyone has cared or noticed. Virtually no one in the mainstream media reported it. Though Michael Jackson's death was a significant news story, the media fell asleep at the wheel. As viewers, we should expect news that affects our lives, not just news that will increase the ratings. Sadly, we get the latter rather than the former.

There are some things more important than the death of Michael Jackson. As a parent, I am concerned about the future that my son will grow up in. And I fear that I will have to tell him, "sorry son, we were too busy watching celebrities sing their favorite Michael Jackson tune on TV, while the culture was secretly decaying at rapid speed." Our world is changing and rather than caring, we flip through the channels and watch another special about the life, legacy, and career of yet another dead celebrity. God save us from our idolatry and ignorance.

For More:
President Obama's Speech can be assessed at the Whitehouse website
Whitehouse: President Obama Declares June to be national LGBT Pride Month
Crosstalk: Obama's Message to the Gay Rights Movement
Punishing Prejudice By Being Prejudice: The Lesson and Legacy of Hate Crimes
Politics Is Thicker Than Promises: Lessons Learned From Obama And the Gay Community
The (In)Tolerance of the Homosexual Movement: See, I Told You So
The (In)Tolerance of the Homosexual Movement: A Response
Where Does The Madness End? Where the Homosexual Agenda Leads - Part 2
D'Souza: The Equal Protection Hoax
Colson: A New Form of Discrimination
Mohler: "An Enforced Secularism" -- A Threat to the Pulpit
A Day of "See, I Told You So's"

Here is the video of the speech:

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Heteronormativiy: Another Word for Heterophobia

Its' Disney's fault that there are so many heterosexuals out there. No really. I'm serious. If you don't believe me, listen to the argument made by the University of Michigan researchers Emily Kazyak and Karin Martin who after watching several hit Disney and other major cartoon-movies dating from 1990-2005 who argue that the way romance is depicted in these movies has led to what they call "heteronormativity."

No really. I'm serious.

Kazyak and Martin consider movies like the Little Mermaid have contributed to heteronormativity. One website reports:

"Despite the assumption that children's media are free of sexual content, our analyses suggest that these media depict a rich and pervasive heterosexual landscape," wrote researchers Emily Kazyak and Karin Martin, in a report published in the latest issue of the Sociologists for Women in Society (SWS) publication Gender & Society . . .

The results, say the researchers, illustrate two ways that the children's films "construct heterosexuality": through "depictions of hetero-romantic love as exceptional, powerful, transformative, and magical," and "depictions of interactions between gendered bodies in which the sexiness of feminine characters is subjected to the gaze of masculine characters."

"Characters in love are surrounded by music, flowers, candles, magic, fire, balloons, fancy dresses, dim lights, dancing and elaborate dinners," the researchers observed. "Fireflies, butterflies, sunsets, wind and the beauty and power of nature often provide the setting for - and a link to the naturalness of - hetero-romantic love."

The SWS press release on the research blamed what they called the "old ideals" of romantic relationships, specifically those found the Brothers Grimm fairy tales, which in many instances inspired the films' storylines, for "such heavily gendered depictions and glorified portrayals of heterosexual relationships."

The team says the results point to heterosexuality achieving a "taken-for-granted status" "because hetero-romance is depicted as powerful."

"Both ordinary and exceptional constructions of heterosexuality work to normalize its status because it becomes difficult to imagine anything other than this form of social relationship or anyone outside of these bonds," they concluded.

"These films provide powerful portraits of a multifaceted and pervasive heterosexuality that likely facilitates the reproduction of heteronormativity."

So . . . it's Disney's fault that the far majority of relationships throughout history, even prior to 1990, have been heterosexual relationships? Shakespear wrote Romeo & Juliet instead of Romeo & Fabio or Juliet & Margaret because Disney had "normalize" the "status" of heterosexuality? Yes, blame Shakespears heteronormativity on Disney cartoons.

This must mean that if Disney wasn't so bias, maybe they would have made Timon and Pumbaa from the Lion King a romantic couple rather than two friends living hakuna matata. Those homophobes!

The logic of this argument is quite ludicrous. Did these researchers not consider that many decades prior to 1990 where movies consisted of heterosexuals falling in love? What about the centuries prior to the birth of Cinderella and Snow White where the far majority of love stories consisted of one man and one woman falling in love? Could this repetitive pattern be the result of nature? Is it not obvious that heterosexual relationships work? Even the Greeks, who celebrated homosexuality and allowed the practice but not the marriatle status of it, understood that hetersexual relationships was the only way for a society to continue.

Heterosexuality is normal because it is natural. Though many might be appalled by such a statement, I dare ask where is ones proof to argue against it? I am not just talking about debate over the "gay gene," but about an array of history where heterosexuality, even in cultures where homosexuality is embraced and allowed, is clearly the dominant norm. Sure, homosexuality has been around for a long time and so has pedophilia, bestiality, and polygamy, but none of them are normative like heterosexuality. Why? Because the far majority of persons born are attracted to the opposite sex because God made us that way not to mention the fact that it works: one can only procreate whenever opposite genders meet.

The motive behind this research should be our focus here, not the argument they are making. It is easy to write this proposed conclusion off as the meanderings of academic elites who have lost their minds, but it is much deeper than that. Scripture is clear that man is fallen and corrupt. Corrupt man is content with his corruption. Corrupt man prides in his corruption and thus will organize and articulate their corruption in order to normalize, legalize, and enforce their corruption. What these researchers present is not common sense or even science, but the outworking of a worldview. In order to normalize homosexuality, there must be theories to explain why it doesn't appear to be normal. A culture as lost as ours continues to go out of its away to explain the prejudice of nature in order to articulate their corruption.

The researchers go on to argue

"Both ordinary and exceptional constructions of heterosexuality work to normalize its status because it becomes difficult to imagine anything other than this form of social relationship or anyone outside of these bonds," they concluded.

"These films provide powerful portraits of a multifaceted and pervasive heterosexuality that likely facilitates the reproduction of heteronormativity."

The SWS press release concluded: "President Obama may have declared June to be Gay Pride Month, but entertainment for children therefore continues to perpetuate a less inclusive message, leaving those outside its confines with little to build their own dreams of happily ever after."

In other words, Disney is preventing millions of American children from experiencing "their own dreams of happily ever after." To these researchers, to portray heterosexuality as normative is prejudice and implies that heterosexuality is natural and best. Such implications is dangerous and must be re-examined. Such logic is not only foolish, but dangerous. The purpose of this research is to call on the makers of children movies and even books to re-examine their biases in order to allow the message that homosexuality is as normal as heterosexuality to young children . . . our children.

The secular worldview is not content with just normalcy, but enforcement. It is amazing to see what intentions they have towards children. Parents must be even more careful and diligent and monitor what their children are watching, reading, and being influenced by. If these researchers get their way, Snow White will be saved by a princess and Cinderella will find her true love not in a man with a slipper, but in a woman who rescues her from her evil step-sisters.

These researchers call on us to recognize what is happening here. Homophobia, as a result of Disney's homonormative standards, is a prejudice that must be removed. Such an argument is oftentimes rooted in a heterophobia mindset. Only those subject to heterophobia would do such research and make such ludicrous arguments. If Emily Kazyak and Karin Martin are concerned that Disney and other G-rated movies are producing homophobes, then how is producing heterophobes any better?

I am concluding that this whole debate is getting out of control. The debate over homosexuality runs deeper than relationships and equality. It seeks to redefine what is normal and natural. The movement is not only content with a voice in the public square, but demands an audience with our children. As a parent, I must constantly be on guard against the attacks our perverted culture makes toward my child. No longer can we assume that cultural entertainment, education, and enlightenment is OK for my child to participate in. This research is about more than movies and entertainment, but a movement in our culture to replace God-given natural attraction for man's perversion, and if elections can't be won now, perhaps they can brainwash our children and force their worldview down our throats in the near future.

Parents beware. Too much Disney, and you may be subjecting your children to heteronormativity.